Monday, February 20, 2012

Forecasters Predict Minor Snow for George's Birthday

As of Monday morning, here's a quick look at what forecasters were predicting for snow from this Monday evening into Tuesday. Most forecasters were predicting 1-3 inches.

WCCO

KSTP

Fox

KARE11

KSTP tweets slightly later in the morning.

Novak Weather

StormChaser Schwartz
National Weather Service

Weather.com

Accuweather

52 comments:

  1. looking at three different short range models that get updated hourly, the RUC Backup (a 24hr model), the Rapid Refresh (18hrs) and the High Resolution Rapid Refresh (15hrs). All three are sowing a slug of warm air from 925 mb up to close to 850 mb. AS this thing moves through, 850mb temps look to be at -2 or -3 C at best, 925mb above freezing for most of southern MN. If that holds expect no more than 1" here in the metro, and that could be generous...sorry but that's what I'm seeing.

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    1. Total Accumulated snow through 4am

      http://rapidrefresh.noaa.gov/RR/from_jet/rr/full/2012022016/acsnw_sfc_f18.png

      http://rapidrefresh.noaa.gov/RR/from_jet/rr/t2/2012022016/temp_t2925_f15.png

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  2. I love seeing some of those numbers going up a bit,its to be expected of KSTP they seem to always be aggressive.@Randyinchamplin it never ceases to amaze me how you can say what you say above while several others are raising their amounts,isn't all the model info readily avaiable for everyone to see,so why two different directions?.....on a side note Bill love all the snapshots of the forecasts good to see them all in one place.

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    1. SamG Just using some of the new guidance that NOAA has developed is all.

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  3. I applaud @Randyinchamplin for his independent thinking. Seems to me it's too easy for everyone to blindly follow models... and often that leads the majority of forecasters to be wrong (together).

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  4. Not much else to say that I haven't said already. I'm sticking with my 1-3 for most of us, with 3-5 in far western and northwestern MN. Timing still looks good, with the area of moisture reaching the western metro around 6pm...starting as rain or rain/snow, then transition to all snow by 9pm. After tonight, eyes will turn to the weekend and the continued potential for a major winter storm close to home. GFS looks solid, GEM further north and west with the low and warmer, and the Euro...well there is some technical issue with that model so the 12z run is late coming in. Hopefully they get things figured out so we can see what it shows. The key today though will be timing, and how quickly things turn all snow. Models can tell us one thing, but nature has shown that she doesn't really care what a computer says or thinks.

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  5. Euro is in...and it looks like a blend between the GFS and GEM for the weekend. Precip type would be an issue with the Euro, where GFS stays well cold enough throughout. Those issues would probably be confined to far southern MN and WI. The Euro is also slower bringing in the system by probably a good 24 hours. Confidence is growing for Sunday/Monday, but I still need to see more consistency with the overall track. It has been bouncing around, but still for the most part affecting the area.

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  6. The only reason why I'm a bit more bullish on accumulating snow is due to the timing of the snow. If this were to fall during the day, there is NO WAY we would get over an inch or two. However, the snow is expected to fall late this evening and overnight. This should provide a better opportunity for accumulation. Regardless, I'm still amazed at all the warm air around and it certainly is making me sweat this prediction.

    I'm more excited for those up in the Red River Valley. I won't be surprised if totals exceed 4 inches. Hell, I would be surprised to see some localized 6"+ amounts, especially in nw MN. Dendrite growth zone is better their and the 700mb low is more concentrated over in that area.

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  7. @ Novak....I agree it is so hard right now with all the warmth around....used this tool, took out snow ratio, and just plotted max temp in profile and the Cobb method with compaction and this is what it spits out.

    http://www.meteor.iastate.edu/~ckarsten/bufkit/images/plotter.php?site=kmsp&var=snow_accum&ratio=0&compaction=1&cobb=1&max_t=1

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  8. hmm...will this play out?? issued at 153pm today, 40% chance of at least 4"???

    http://www.hpc.ncep.noaa.gov/wwd/day1_psnow_gt_04.gif

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    1. If so, I wonder why no Advisory has been issued..?

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    2. Marc: major change on the HRRR model (my favorite short term model), I just wished the RUC was on board it stills say around a inch...oh well. This I believe looks a lot like this mornings ECMWF

      http://rapidrefresh.noaa.gov/hrrrconus/from_jet/hrrr/t2/2012022018/acsnw_t2sfc_f15.png

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    3. BTW as of mid April The HRRR will be operational and replace the RUC

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  9. NWS is up to 2-4 inches in their graphical forecast put out a bit ago,also in their discussion they mention like Novak does it will transition to snow quicker due to the fact that precip will be falling after dark,go more snow,as Plymouth Weather Lover would say BRING IT!

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  10. MPR update is for 2-3 inches with,isolated 4 inch amounts.

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  11. There is already some very spotty, very lite drizzle out here in Carver County. Nothing to get worked up about and temps are still in the 40s, but it does show that the atmosphere is already saturating, which has been a major roadblock with past systems this winter.

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  12. Very warm for a ton of accumulation. Randy in Champlin I tip my cap for your contrary opinion. Novak I like your participation also. Makes it fun to watch and learn. Sure seems like whatever falls will melt in the next 48 hours.

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  13. The change-over to snow happened in Carver county right on cue around 6:00. It's light-moderate, and despite temps still in the mid-30s, it is sticking.

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  14. Transition to snow already here in Golden Valley,very short period of rain,snow coming down moderately.........let it snow let it snow let it snow,I'm dreaming of a white Christmas oh wait crap Christmas is long over.

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  15. Plymouth Weather LoverFebruary 20, 2012 at 7:16 PM

    Snowing pretty good in Plymouth! Love it! Was hoping for at least 4 inches so this is looking good. The lack of dry air in place is a nice change of pace. Nothing to overcome with the sw flow! Keep bringing it!

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  16. Snow falling moderately to heavy in Red Wing. We got no rain what-so-ever.

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  17. Oh! A winter weather advisory! I think I just crapped my drawers!

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  18. It sticking here, too. good coating on the ground

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  19. Easily an inch in GV,everything is caked in white,roads covered with moderate snow falling....man I missed you snow

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  20. ok I apologize to everyone, the short terms models over the noon hour were absolute garbage, outside of the VSREF. Next time I go against the ECMWF solution would someone please slap me up the side of the face and snap me back to reality!!! I kind of feel like Joe Bastardi when he was calling for snow as far north as New Jersey and even NYC for this last weekend, shame on me. Oh well at least I can laugh at myself. Humble would describe my felling right now. In the meantime it's a early Nov. winter land out there!!!

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  21. Randy, don't be so hard on yourself. I think you nailed the forecast, at least in Rice County. Barely 1/2" here (and melting), and looks like the end is in sight on radar (unless we get wraparound).

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    1. Thanks I appreciate the comment.

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  22. We're right around an inch+ here with probably 1-2 hours of snow left. We'll probably hit 2 inches, which would make it the biggest snow of the season for us (sad truth), but still nothing to write home about!

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  23. Did my nightly trek from Golden Valley to Eden Prairie,and the roads were junk the whole way down 169 the roads were snow covered or slushy at best and a few in the ditch or hit the guard rail,they were not WET like a few mets I heard leading up to this event(most notable Paul Douglas said it on his blog late last week)

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  24. Wheres my boy Novak,Novak if any there was a time to "inform the public" about the roads it would have been tonight,I echo what big daddy said the roads are horrible,Novak why nothing in your posts about the roads this time,I know I know we live in Minnesota and we should expect bad roads when it snows,cant blame MNDOT snow is coming down in a good clip for a while now.

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  25. This much talked about Major Winter Storm for Sunday/Monday is still a good 5 days away yet I'm damn near ready to call it "A Lock". Could this be?

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  26. I think tonight's storm was an odd situation. On the surface, most snowfall predictions were in the ballpark, but somehow the magnitude of the impact -- mainly the fact that the snow accumulated quickly on all roads -- seemed underestimated. Agree? Disagree?

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  27. @Novak, for next weekend my thumb is on the hammer, not ready to lock and load it yet, what worries me is the EPO, we don't want to much of a nw flow before the storm gets here or the baroclinic zone may set up just to our south. It will be very close IMO. -3 Temp anomaly before the storm gets here would be nice to see, anything less, not so good.

    http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/forecasts/teleconn/images/compare.we.png

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  28. If the GFS burns me this time, I will pretty much throw in the towel on attempting to forecast...but I will get to that in a minute. First though, overall totals did appear to be right in everybody's ballpark, but what threw some of us (including myself) off was the faster than expected transition to snow. Some areas that I thought would see a brief mix before changing to snow ended up not seeing any mixing at all. I'm not going to beat myself up on that one because there are lots of factors that can change how quickly things change to snow. I do believe Novak mentioned the timing of the snow being later would help for things to accumulate. While there is no direct mention of the roads in that post...that should have been taken as though it would accumulate on grass and roads. That's the way I read it at least. Now, onto the weekend. What is frustrating me is that the usually reliable and consistent European model has been anything but. Pretty much no two model runs have been alike with that model, taking the low on crazy tracks. The difference between the 12z and 00z run of the model is amazing. This morning actually looked similar to what the GFS has been showing for a while so I thought it finally caught on. Tonight's run disproved my thinking. The GFS, on the other hand has been very consistent with the track, providing a perfect track for southern and central MN, as well as western WI to get a really healthy dose of snow, with the potential for blizzard conditions across these same areas. Outside of maybe one or two model runs, the GFS has been pretty much a lock. We need this to get closer so the NAM and SREF can pick up on it and we can throw those into the mix. Now...the Euro still has a major storm for close to home, but its main impacts would be seen in the Dakotas and northern MN. For now, I'm siding with the GFS due to its consistency, but if the Euro starts locking in on something different I will become concerned and pretty much throw out anything the GFS ever tells me. hehehe

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  29. Man Duane,Randy,Novak no time for the weary,the snow hasnt even stopping and your looking towards the weekend already,please dont jinx it talking about it this far out(but I sure hope big daddy sees a big daddy,you know what I mean)so still falling in and around the metro,this is easily the longest duration snow sevent of 2012,keep it coming!!!!!!!!!

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  30. Hahaha big daddy...I hear ya man. Peaking at radar it looks like there is a bit more intensification going on around the metro with some redevelopment to the south. There is a piece of energy along the trough that is helping in the redevelopment, but looking at the loop that energy is starting to fade a bit...should be interesting to see how radar reacts to that.

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  31. @Randyinchamplin dont beat yourself up too much,its not like you were off by 4,5,6 inches,just maybe 1 or 2,your really talented so keep it up and nail this whopper coming in this weekend,looks good on the models as of now.@Duane I love your essays man,keep it going,yeah radar returns increasing south and moving NE,snow not done yet,I could see .5 to 1 inch more during the overnight hours.

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  32. Essays huh? Hahaha! Yeah I get a bit long winded. I'm just throwing this out there for good measure...I officially consider the operational runs of the Euro and GEM to be outliers, because the ensembles of these models match up well with the placement of the low on the GFS. The timing still isn't there, but general track is pretty darn close. I fully expect the Euro and GEM to come around close to what the GFS has been showing. Also, the 06z NAM is now showing the trough edging into the northwest at the end of its run. Hopefully by Wednesday or Thursday things lock in.

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  33. 0z GFS looked about perfect for a big storm for southern MN. Of course I don't trust anything the GFS says.

    To be fair though, most of the models did at least hit the existence of last nights system a good 5+ days out.

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  34. This is a bit of goed news..HPC not trusting the ECWMF...neither am I. A portion of their extended discussion :

    THERE IS ZERO ENSEMBLE SUPPORT FOR THE 00Z ECMWF
    SOLUTION ACROSS THE NORTHERN PLAINS AMONGST THE 12Z GLOBAL
    ENSEMBLE GUIDANCE...AND THE EXPECTED TROUGHING IN HUDSON BAY AND
    ANY UNANTICIPATED SHORTWAVES ROUNDING THE EASTERN SIDE OF THE
    WESTERN TROUGH WOULD SHIFT ANY CYCLONE TRACK HEADING THROUGH THE
    PLAINS EASTWARD/TO THE RIGHT. STILL...THIS COMPROMISE SOLUTION
    KEEPS US ON THE NORTHWEST FRINGE OF THE 12Z ECMWF ENSEMBLE MEMBER
    SPREAD...JUST IN CASE THE 00Z ENSEMBLE MEMBERS SHIFT NORTHWEST.

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  35. what amazes me more than just the different tracks of the euro, is the timing differences. the euro is still much slower than the gfs. the gfs slams the storm through, while the euro takes its time in winding up a bigger storm. frankly if you are a fan of a big blizzard for someone, you root for the euro solution, although, meterologically speaking the gfs does make more sense (did i just say that?). the storm is still over 100 hours away and a lot can change. this is by far the most interesting storm to forecast all winter. i hope there are a few more before spring arrives.

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  36. Plymouth Weather Lover all your bringing looks like it got brought,the 5 inches reported in Plymouth looks good to get the golden snow shovel award,I was close I got 4.2 measured in my backyard in good old Golden Valley,don't know all the final tallies,but predictions look reasonable,some cities were on the higher end of the spectrum and it may feel like we got a lot more only cuz it seems like all winter whenever there was a hint of snow in the air we always got less/lower end of the range

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  37. Plymouth Weather LoverFebruary 21, 2012 at 10:37 AM

    Holy Smokes! I am in 7th Heaven. Plymouth gets the most for the metro area at 5 inches?? Love it. I said bring it and it brought it. I am still hoping for 1-3 inches for mid-week (seems like people have forgotten about that little guy). Let's hope this whopper doesn't miss us as we may not have the perfect set-up until next winter. C'mon, bring it mid-week and bring it Sunday/Monday.

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  38. I'm always amazed at how the temperature will drop just enough for it to dump several inches of snow, but will drop no further. We descended from 43 yesterday to almost exactly 32 when it started snowing. It's like there's a script or something.

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  39. This morning run of the GFS compared to last night run of CFS v2

    GFS...
    http://i960.photobucket.com/albums/ae84/arpetersonembaqcom/CONUS_GFS_1000-500_SLPPRPTHK_138HRgif221.gif

    CFSv2...
    http://i960.photobucket.com/albums/ae84/arpetersonembaqcom/CONUS_CFS_1000-500_SLPTHKPRP_32HRgif0221.gif

    If this verifies there is a good chance most major roads in the state south of a Fargo to Duluth line will be closed. They may even have to pull the plows off the roads in the metro beyond the beltway, like in Anoka, Northern Washingto, Dakota and Carver counties etc. My oh my.

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  40. The Hurricane Hunters will be flying into the system over the Central Pacific. Should help the models greatly.

    II. PACIFIC REQUIREMENTS
    1. FLIGHT ONE -- NOAA49 --
    A. P55/ DROP 9 (45.0N 157.0W)/ 23/0000Z
    B. NOAA9 23WSC TRACK55
    C. 22/1930Z
    D. 17 DROPS AS PUBLISHED ON TRACK
    E. 41,000 TO 45,000 FT/ 23/0600Z

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  41. CWY2190...thank you for sharing that! Do you have any perspective on the scope of flights like this? Is it relatively common for the Hurricane Hunters to fly out and inspect systems during the winter? Or is this something that is considered "rare"?

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  42. From what I understand, and I can be corrected...but I believe they only started doing this a few years ago and I think it is only for systems that either a) will have a significant impact over a larger area, or b) a system that models are having a tough time getting an exact handle on. Here is an article from back in '08 that talks about one of the flights

    http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2008/20080211_p3.html

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  43. Ok, I was wrong on the start time. It looks like it started right around the year 2000. Otherwise that article is pretty good. Euro continues to show timing differences when compared to the GFS...track is a bit different too, but it ends up with a similar solution. I really hope tonights runs really start lining this thing up.

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  44. VERY interesting...thanks Duane!

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  45. Where's the sun and 41 degrees it was supposed to be today???

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